WASHINGTON (CBS DC) — American voters overwhelmingly oppose undercutting President Barack Obama’s signature health care law by shutting down the federal government – a percentage gap of 72 percent to 22 percent.

A national survey of Americans oppose Congress “shutting down major activities of the federal government” as a way to undermine the Affordable Care Act, often referred to as “Obamacare.” The Quinnipiac University national poll released Tuesday also found that voters oppose 64-27 percent blocking an increase in the nation’s debt ceiling as a way to stop the federal health law.

The poll shows that Americans are split on “Obamacare” overall with 45 percent supporting it, while 47 percent are in opposition.

But opposition to a shutdown as a means of stopping health care is strong. A margin of 90 to 6 percent of Democrats oppose the shutdown, 74 – 19 independent voters oppose the shutdown and only a slim margin of 49 – 44 percent of Republicans said they support the federal government shutdown.

“Americans are certainly not in love with Obamacare, but they reject decisively the claim by Congressional Republicans that it is so bad that it’s worth closing down the government to stop it,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

Obama himself received a negative 45-49 percent overall job approval rating, in comparison to his 46-48 percent score on Aug. 2.

But American voters expressed they still trust Obama more than congressional Republicans on a series of issues: 63-26 percent trust him to help low income families, 51-38 percent on helping the middle class and 47-38 trust him to handle the implementation of health care.

Twenty-eight percent of voters blamed Republicans for the gridlock, 10 percent blame Democrats, and 58 percent blame both parties equally.

From Sept. 23 – 29, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,497 registered voters in numerous states for this survey.


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